Eat your way to a glowing complexion.
Eat your way to a glowing complexion – sounds great doesn’t it, but is it really possible? The answer is a resounding, yes! How you nourish yourself is quite literally written all over your face. Whatever the state of your skin today you can be sure that what you’ve eaten over the past few weeks will have had a direct effect on whether you’ve got the glow or not. There are of course other factors like sleep, sun exposure and alcohol consumption for example. The combination of good quality sleep, reduced stress and fresh air as often as is practicable is all important. When we are stressed then what we get from our food is often not enough so adopting some mindful practices to your day would be advisable too if you’re feeling the overwhelm.
Did you know that your body is covered with approximately 20 square foot of skin? It’s an amazing figure and reminds us that our skin is in fact the largest organ in our body. That’s got to make it worthy of our love and nurturing surely? Your skin naturally reflects any imbalances or internal inflammation. Have you noticed that when you feel your best, for example and are in good health, that your skin will most likely appear glowing, youthful and clear? When you’re run down, tired or unwell however, your skin can become congested, dry and irritated.
So the nitty gritty is that while there is an almost overwhelming number of products you can use topically on your skin the basics for good skin start with good nutrition and great hydration. In the beauty and fitness world there is a great saying – ‘You can’t outrun a bad diet’ and the same is true for your skin. So, how can you eat your way to a glowing complexion?
Zinc is very important for maintaining healthy skin, especially for acne sufferers. The skin contains 20% of the body’s zinc and if you’re lacking in this essential mineral acne is often a symptom. Zinc is also an important cofactor in Collagen production, which is so important as we age, keeping skin plumper and less wrinkled.
Did you know that one of the best sources of zinc is in fact cacao, great news if you’re one of our many cacao macaroon lovers!
The good news is that there are plenty of tasty ways to increase your zinc intake. From a fruit and vegetable perspective avocados are the highest in zinc, shortly followed by pomegranate and raspberries. Legumes, oats, mushrooms and kale to name a few more of our favourite ingredients are also all high in zinc. Our guest blogger, Jenny Wren’s adaptable veggie curry would be a great combination of lots of zinc filled ingredients.
If your skin is feeling dry or inflamed then upping your intake of essential fatty acids may help. EFA’s can also help to reduce sun damage, an excellent thing to know at this time of the year. They are a powerhouse that keeps on giving from a skin perspective.
Rich sources of EFA’s can be found in nuts and seeds in particular if you’re following a plant based diet. Chia seeds, flaxseeds and walnuts are some of our favourite sources of fatty acids. Sprinkled on your morning granola and coconut yogurt is a super simple way to get these in early in the day. We also love using walnuts as part of the base for our Raspbounty and Peppermint raw Slices.
Sounds like a slightly shy carrot right? But in fact beta carotene is a super clever antioxidant that converts into Vitamin A. Vitamin A helps to grow and repair tissue. By reducing your environmental damage Vitamin A can help to reduce the signs of ageing. Too much beta carotene is not a good thing though so don’t overdo it.
We love to indulge in a pile of sweet potato wedges from time to time and these are a really easy way to up your intake. If you know you need a beta carotene hit then why not add some carrots too? We love ours served up with a dollop of Hunter & Gather avocado mayo on the side too. Or how about homemade kale crisps, also a fab snack to ensure that you’re getting all you need? If you’re feeling fruity apricots are great while they are in season too.
Selenium is your wrinkles arch enemy! It protects your skin from free radicals and other skin damaging compounds before they can cause havoc and lead to wrinkles forming. The great news is that you don’t actually need loads of it to make a big difference. Selenium along with other minerals, bolsters your body’s army of white blood cells and strengthens your response to infections—including those on the skin—since skin is your body’s first line of defence.
Amazingly a single brazil nut contains almost double the 55mcg of selenium that is recommended as your daily dose. That’s not to say that you can’t eat more but it’s great to know how simple it could be to make this big difference to your skin. Brown rice and wheat germ are also good places to look for plant based sources of selenium.
If you fancy whipping something up at home then we can thoroughly recommend our Nourishing Truffles. A yummy way to get to your 55mcg a day!
We also use brazil nuts in the base of several of our weekly Raw Slices, caramel and tiramisu.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this little insight into how to eat your way to a glowing complexion. We’d love it if you leave us a comment below and let us know what you found most helpful or interesting.
Let’s go and glow!by